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Old 06-19-2008, 01:27 AM   #1
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Mesh problems

I'm currently working on a World in Conflict custom map (see this thread for more info: http://forums.cgsociety.org/showthr...p?f=39&t=642728).

The reason I'm posting here is I'm using Modo 301 to finish off the map's road meshes. How it works is the level editor creates a road spline, and then you can export a mesh that is matched to your map's terrain. I'm getting some nasty mesh errors upon re-importing, however.

As I'm new to Modo, I thought I would ask here. What is the best way to repair my road mesh? As this map is for a design contest, I have to get these roads finished within a few days, so I'm very pressed for time. Thank you for your help!

I have attached three screenshots, one from Modo, one from Showbox (a proprietary tool used to prepare the LWOs for ingame use), and one from in the game itself. They clearly show the mesh errors.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg modo 2008-06-18 21-07-55-32.jpg (91.9 KB, 23 views)
File Type: jpg ShowboxN 2008-06-18 21-13-58-31.jpg (53.0 KB, 17 views)
File Type: jpg badroadsinwiced.jpg (83.3 KB, 31 views)
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Old 06-19-2008, 03:01 AM   #2
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You appear to have created an unnecessary bit of a mess for yourself, as it looks like there are two layers of polygons that crisscross along the path. You only need one layer of polys for a simple path. The extra geometry is causing the errors at render time. Try selecting one layer and deleting it and all should be good. In modo, delete the end cap polygon at each end, then select one polygon, press "L" to select the loop. If it is the bottom one, then delete, if it is the top one, then invert the selection before deleting. At least this is what it looks like from the images included. If, for some reason, you need an upper and lower layer, then line them up, rather than criss/crossing them. Good luck with the project.
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Last edited by paulhart : 06-19-2008 at 03:03 AM.
 
Old 06-19-2008, 03:29 AM   #3
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Thanks for the advice, Paul! I tried it out, but it appears that my mesh is already a single layer. Looping the road and deleting it simply deleted the entire mesh. Also, there were not any polygons on the end.

I'm wondering if the vertices of the mesh have somehow become disconnected, which is causing the triangles to show?
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Old 06-19-2008, 05:24 AM   #4
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Since I don't have the geometry to play with, I am working off the images. I tried to duplicate what I thought was the problem, not sure it it helped. I created a strip of polygons, copied and duplicated, then skewed one edge and welded the vertices together on the one edge. Your's look like it might all be triangles?? which is more common in Game Engines, so I don't know. Sometimes I rebuild to try to get around the problem if I feel like I am spending too much time trying to figure out what is wrong. I don't know without playing with the actual geometry. Good luck.
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Old 06-19-2008, 02:59 PM   #5
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Yes, the mesh is all triangles (for the most part, at least the main road sections). I tried using the Merge Vertice tool set at 500mm, but while it changed things in Modo, the end result was the the same.

I've attached a sample LWO road mesh if anyone wants to take a look. Thanks!
Attached Files
File Type: zip roadmesh5.zip (44.2 KB, 2 views)
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Old 06-19-2008, 03:23 PM   #6
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I thought about this last night and your model helped. You need to turn on "smoothing" in the Surface Editor for the path, it is currently turned off. Should make the difference you need.
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Old 06-19-2008, 03:52 PM   #7
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I'm definately a Modo rookie, haha. Where might I find the surface editor? I dug though the Modo documentation, but couldn't find anything.

Thanks again for your help, Paul! With luck, I will be able to rescue my meshes and avoid many hours of work that I can't spare.
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Old 06-19-2008, 05:16 PM   #8
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In Lightwave, it is the Surface Editor, but in modo it is the Shader Tree/Properties of your Material (Surface 0) in the Properties Tab, at the bottom, that are set to "Smoothing 0.0%"
The default Material has Smoothing set to 100% but you created your own material and turned it to "0" You should only do this when you really want every facet to show.
Other issues along the way...
Generally it helps to name things in a recognizable manner, unless there is some compelling reason required by the game environment. (Surface 0???)
You also have multiple instances of the same texture in your Shader Tree, an unnecessary and potentially troublesome muddle.
Generally another "guideline" is to model to "real world" dimensions, or at least approximations. Why I bring this up is that this little path of yours is "gigantic" as noted below here in the dimensions. This can cause problems along the way with texture scaling and integration of other assets or pipelines

X=229.4219 m
Y=30.8098 m
Z=562.7541 m
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Last edited by paulhart : 06-19-2008 at 06:26 PM.
 
Old 06-19-2008, 06:05 PM   #9
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That was it! After tweaking the smoothing on the material, here's how it looks in-game:

http://s209.photobucket.com/albums/...13-55-47-43.jpg

The LWO is indeed a mess. My previous 3D apps have been 3DS Max and Cinema 4D, so Modo is quite a shift for me. I'm working on cleaning up the files, but as long as the game accepts them, I'm not going to worry too much about it.

Once again, thank you for the valuable (and fast) responses, Paul! Thanks to you, I'll be able to go ahead with some public beta testing of the map this weekend.
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Old 06-19-2008, 11:16 PM   #10
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Glad to hear that it works. Smoothing is a function in all (most?) 3D programs in which the texture rendering "fudges" the transition between adjacent polygons to appear smooth, based on the angle or percent (different programs??) that you decide is needed. It allows less polygons to appear smooth. Your level looks good, keep up the efforts.
Regarding some of the other comments, it is just a good idea to adopt certain working strategies early on rather than having to retro-fit your "brain" and old files later to adapt to some new requirement. So, naming textures and meshes intelligently, keeping unnecessary surfaces out of the stack, size elements to a relative "real world" scale. Best to you.
Paul
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Old 07-09-2008, 03:51 PM   #11
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Sorry to bump this, but I just wanted to say thank you once again! The roads came out perfectly:

(Click for full sized images)







And, I actually won the contest that I was in! You can read about it here:

http://www.derelictstudios.net/
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Old 07-09-2008, 04:15 PM   #12
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Congratulations!!! Well done. The renders look fine, nice variety. Glad that some of my comments helped. Best to you on your future efforts.
Paul
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Old 07-09-2008, 04:15 PM   #13
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